Excerpt from Martin Luther King's “I Have a Dream” Speech

The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., delivered this speech on August 28, 1963, on the steps of the Washington, D.C., Lincoln Memorial during the march on Washington for Jobs and Freedom. For the full text, see the Martin Luther King, Jr. Papers project at Stanford University, www.stanford.edu/group/king .

I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: “We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal.” I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slaveowners will be able to sit down together at a table of brotherhood. I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a desert state, sweltering with the heat of injustice and oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice. I have a dream that my four children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character. I have a dream today.

See also additional excerpts from Martin Luther King's speeches.


The Statue of Liberty PoemDocuments and SpeechesThe Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag